Mouth of the Maurice River

CLIMATE ACTION

Delaware Bay Communities Get New Defenses from Rising Seas

New project to combine coastal defense with natural measures to help coastal resiliency

JON HURDLE / NJ SPOTLIGHT NEWS – New Jersey’s efforts to defend its coasts from rising seas will take another step forward under a new plan to build breakwaters and restore marshland at the mouth of the Maurice River in Cumberland County.

A team led by the American Littoral Society has been awarded $4.8 million in federal funds as part of a $12 million project to build some 6,600 feet of breakwaters and rock barriers that will resist storm surges while helping the shoreline to regenerate naturally after being battered by Superstorm Sandy in 2012.

The rock breakwaters are being designed as “hybrid living shorelines” that will include oyster reefs, mussel beds and plantings of marsh grass to defend a peninsula called Basket Flats — an area of coastline that lies between the Delaware Bay and the coastal towns of Bivalve and Shell Pile in Commercial Township on the west side of the river, and Leesburg and Heislerville in Maurice River Township on the east side …